In the wake of Daniel Bryan‘s retirement from in-ring competition, we’re beginning to see ripples of positive change regarding concussions in pro wrestling. Chris Nowinski, the former WWE superstar and one of the forefathers of brain trauma awareness in the NFL, has already weighed in on Bryan’s neurological health, and now the foundation he set up to research concussions is in the news again.
This time, the news is pretty unexpected. In a report from ESPN’s Michael Rothstein, WWE Hall of Fame member Kevin Nash revealed his plans to donate his brain and spinal cord to Nowinski’s Concussion Legacy Foundation once he passes away.
“‘I went ahead and gave my spinal cord and my brain to the study, and I carry a card in my wallet that [says] my brain and spine goes to them. It’s in my will. Of course, my wife’s aware of it.’
Nash, 56, said he made the decision to donate his brain six or seven years ago and has been working with the center at Boston University.
Nash told ESPN that scans of his brain have shown abnormalities but that there has been no evidence of brain shrinkage. He also said he has been more emotional in recent years and that he has experienced short-term memory loss but isn’t sure if that is related to prior brain trauma.”
Rothstein’s report also mentions that Nash is part of an ongoing study involving more than 500 athletes. During the research, he has submitted to cognitive testing online and over the phone to track possible neurological degeneration. Nash will be joining the likes of NFL alumni Eric Winston, Gary Fencik, and Mike Haynes, all of whom have pledged their brains in the name of science. I have to admit, confronting the eventual mortality of Diesel is kind of bumming me out, but he’s contributing to a very important cause here. If you’re an athlete interested in joining the study, the Concussion Legacy Foundation has more info here.